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Telemarketing Consumer Fraud and Abuse Prevention Act: Decoded

First off we have to graze over what The United States Congress found out about telemarketing. Congress noticed that telemarketing could not be regulated by the FTC for the sake of consumer protection, given that the industry and its practices could easily be carried out across state lines. They estimated that consumers stood to lose $40 billion annually in telemarketing fraud. They astutely concluded they needed to do something.

The Rules

The Congress decided that “The Commission” would be responsible for the prohibiting of deceptive telemarketing acts, including those who assist or facilitated these acts (ie. credit card laundering). The said that telemarketers cannot misrepresent sales calls to appear like surveys. During the call, marketers must disclose purpose of call, the nature of prices, name of company and any other such disclosures “The Commission” deems appropriate. They state there will also be a provision requiring telemarketers to cease from using a pattern of calling which normal consumers were consider annoying, abusive to privacy or coercive. Congress goes on to say that there will be restrictions on hours, both day and night, when calls can be made to consumers.

What This Means To Us

Under this Act, we can expect to not have to deal with auto dialers or prerecorded voices, unless it is an emergency call. You can also expect to not receive unsolicited calls to your cell phone. The act protects us from “junk faxes” and requires all faxes have an accurate time/date/ sending # stamp. It also goes on to allow cases to be brought to court over the following of the act in amounts of minimum damages of $500 and up to $1500 for willingly committing actions against The Act. It also gives states the opportunity to improve on the protections.